Baxter State Park Visiting Artist Application

Thank you for reviewing my submission!  

The Baxter State Park Visiting Artist Program presents an amazing opportunity to experience a beautiful, pristine environment, to challenge myself as a person, and to grow as a painter. I am excited to apply!

Please find a brief statement about my work, as well as my residency plan, open studio/community plan, references, CV, and images attached. 

My references are:

  • Tim Fish, author & artist., 617-359-6853
  • Steve Buckley, columnist & author., 617-594-1774

I appreciate your time and consideration!

“The creator must find everything in himself, and in nature.” -Rilke

Growing up in rural New Hampshire instilled in me a deep sensitivity and appreciation for the natural world.  Nature is a source of discovery and renewal for me, as well as a force of power and awe.  When approached with wonder and respect, the hills, forests, and open skies are an endless wellspring of inspiration.  

This inspiration led me to bring some paints and brushes with me on a trip to Acadia National Park in 2006.  Though I went to art school, I had no experience with plein-air painting, and scant equipment (I purchased an easel after picking up the rental car and stored my wet paintings in a cardboard box salvaged from a grocery store in Bar Harbor).  The paintings I produced that week were…terrible, but they were the start of an incredible journey.

Since that trip, I’ve come to understand that my work goes beyond simply replicating a scene.  Painting deepens my participation in the world.  The images are a language through which I aim to clarify, illustrate, and communicate my experience of the landscapes around me.

Time has also taught me that my paintings aren’t solely mine. Each viewer brings their own biographies, perspectives, and associations–adding ever-new layers of connection and meaning. This dialogue between artist and viewer has informed and guided my painting through several bodies of work.

My most recent group of paintings has focused on my home city of Somerville, Massachusetts.  In creating these paintings I adopted the role of a real-time anthropologist.  My pictures explore and reveal the everyday beauty so easily overlooked in the bustle of urban life.  Capturing these simple moments – the diamond sparkle of a subway car on a summer morning, or the midas-touch of a sunset radiating down a sidewalk – serves to connect and remind the viewer of the wonder and beauty that is all around us.  

As much as I enjoy the urban jungle, it is easy to become engulfed in the noise and tumult.  I frequently escape the city to revitalize my soul, refresh my connection with nature, and of course, to paint.  For these reasons, I am applying to the visiting artist program.

I will approach Baxter with the intent of starting a new dialogue with viewers.  The beauty of the natural world is rarely considered ‘overlooked.’  Instead, painting wilderness requires the approach of a poet. That is, to distill the immense complexity and nuance of the physical experience into an image that is honest and elemental.  I hope to imbue that spiritual and contemplative essence in my work in ways that will resonate with my audience.

And, in the spirit of Cole and Church, who brought the inspiring drama and wilderness of Maine to city dwellers in New York, I hope my paintings of the park will encourage people to re-engage with the natural environment in Maine, or wherever they may find it. 

Select images of my landscape work

My process: A little paint and a lotta looking.

My process is rooted in observation.  I walk, hike, or bike to locations and work on site. This method ensures as much visual and experiential fidelity as possible.

I’ve designed and built my own plein-air kit to facilitate this process.  My easel, tripod, brushes, paints, sketchbook, and wet panels all stow away in a single backpack. 

Using this gear I am able to finish 2-3 small paintings per day, depending on travel and weather and the complexity of the scene. These paintings range in size up to 9×12”.  They often stand alone as finished artworks, or serve as preliminary reference and color notes for larger works.  

In the studio I use these smaller paintings, as well as drawings and notes from the field, to ‘work up’ to larger paintings.  These paintings require multiple painting sessions over the course of 1-2 weeks.  They are more extensively planned out, and are finished to a higher degree of detail and polish than the small works. 

Plan for Residency

For days 1-7, I plan to hike and explore to collect ideas and gain a sense of the area.  On each of these ventures I will compile sketches and notes, and complete 1-2 small paintings on location. 

I will also observe and identify areas from which I will compose two larger paintings.  The larger pieces require sketches and studies, as well as compositional drawings and color notes.  The paths, streams, waterfalls, and scenic vistas will provide ample inspiration for work.

In week two I will dedicate a block of each day to work on these larger paintings.  They will be painted in layers.  By alternating between two paintings, I can ensure drying time for each layer.  

The rest of the day will be spent hiking and making additional small paintings. 

At the end of the residency I expect to have 2 finished presentation pieces, and 20-30 small paintings, as well as a library of sketches and drawings. These will be edited to create an in-person exhibition during my open studios (see next page) as well as an exhibition on my website. 

Open Studios and Community Program

I’m excited to welcome the public and share my work with them! 

For the Baxter Open Studio, I would like to invite people to a plein-air painting demonstration along the banks of Kidney pond.

I will discuss the overall process by which I select a subject matter, design a composition, and build the painting.  I’ll also answer questions and talk about how drawing and painting a scene can heighten one’s skills in observation and experience.  I’d welcome any participants to bring their own supplies and join in! 

For the evening program I’d like to give a talk about the two inventions: paint-tubes and man-made pigments, that allowed artists to break free of the studio after centuries of painting indoors and paint directly from nature.  These two humble inventions gave artists such as Cole and Church the tools needed to create their masterpieces and spurred the Impressionists to capture details of everyday life.  

Post residency

I will create an exhibition of Baxter pieces which I will show online and also in my studio space during open studio events. These events are an engagement rich experience for viewers, who share their connections, ask questions, and interact with the work. 

Each year I open my studio for both Somerville Open Studios and Brickbottom Artists Building Open Studios.  On average, I welcome over 1000 annual visitors, from dedicated collectors to art novices.  

I also plan to use my sketches and notes to work up additional larger pieces throughout the year. 

Adam Leveille, CV


BFA, cum laude. Montserrat College of Art, Beverly, MA.

Exhibitions and Residencies


  • Still Life Show (with Julie AngelaTheresa and Jason Polins), Beebe Estate, Melrose, MA


  • Grassroots : Emerging Artists: Rockport Art Association & Museum, Rockport, MA (RAA&M Award for Excellence in Any Medium)
  • Exhibit New England : North Shore Arts Association, Gloucester, MA
  • In Transit : Brickbottom Gallery, curated by Gary Deuhr, Somerville, MA


  • Seven Hills : Love Letters from Somerville : the art house, Somerville, MA (solo)
  • Grassroots : Emerging Artists : Rockport Art Association & Museum, Rockport, MA (Gamblin Prize Winner)
  • Somerville As Muse : Brickbottom Gallery & Somerville Museum, curated by Debra Olin, Somerville, MA
  • Contributing Members Show : Rockport Art Association & Museum, Rockport, MA
  • The Urban Sketchers : Brickbottom Gallery, curated by Pier Gustafson, Somerville, MA
  • Plein Air Painting Residency, Seps Farm E. Marion, NY


  • All Small : Inside Out Gallery, Somerville, MA
  • Paintings On the Farm : Sep’s Farm, E. Marion, NY (solo)
  • Holiday Show : Chase Young Gallery, Boston, MA 


  • CHASE YOUNG STUDIO : Chase Young Gallery, Boston, MA
  • Pride : 50 years After Stonewall : Brickbottom Gallery, Somerville, MA
  • BAA Members Show : Brickbottom Gallery, Somerville, MA


  • Paintings : Adam Leveille Simon’s, Cambridge, MA (solo)
  • Red : Brickbottom Gallery, Somerville, MA
  • BAA Members Show : Brickbottom Gallery, Somerville, MA


  • Sketches : Drawing from life and life drawing : Brickbottom Gallery, Somerville, MA
  • BAA Members Show : Brickbottom Gallery, Somerville, MA
  • Plein Air Painting Residency, Seps Farm E. Marion, NY

Thank you for your time and consideration!